Nature conservation

Threatened species

Golden-tipped Bat - profile

Indicative distribution

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The areas shown in pink and/purple are the sub-regions where the species or community is known or predicted to occur. They may not occur thoughout the sub-region but may be restricted to certain areas. ( click here to see geographic restrictions). The information presented in this map is only indicative and may contain errors and omissions.
Scientific name: Phoniscus papuensis
Conservation status in NSW: Vulnerable
Commonwealth status: Not listed
Profile last updated: 06 Jun 2022


The Golden-tipped Bat has dark brown, curly fur with bright golden tips. The distinctively coloured fur extends along the wings, legs and tail. It has a short, pointed, over-hanging muzzle and pointy, funnel-shaped ears. Adults weigh about 6 grams and have a wingspan of about 25 cm.


The Golden-tipped Bat is distributed along the east coast of Australia in scattered locations from Cape York Peninsula in Queensland to south of Eden in southern NSW. It has recently been trapped just inside the Victorian border. It also occurs in New Guinea.

Habitat and ecology

  • Found in rainforest and adjacent wet and dry sclerophyll forest up to 1000m. Also recorded in tall open forest, Casuarina-dominated riparian forest and coastal Melaleuca forests.
  • Bats will fly up to two kilometres from roosts to forage in rainforest and sclerophyll forest on mid and upper-slopes.
  • Roost mainly in rainforest gullies on small first- and second-order streams in usually abandoned hanging Yellow-throated Scrubwren and Brown Gerygone nests modified with an access hole on the underside. Bats may also roost under thick moss on tree trunks, in tree hollows, dense foliage and epiphytes.
  • Bats will use multiple roost and change roosts regularly.
  • Bats roost individually or in small colonies which can contain up to approximately 20 bats of both males and females or just a single sex.
  • Maternity roots may occur away from water sources with one maternity roost found 450m upslope of the nearest water course in a broken bough.
  • Specialist feeder on small web-building spiders.
  • There is one breeding cycle per year.

Regional distribution and habitat

Click on a region below to view detailed distribution, habitat and vegetation information.


Recovery strategies

Activities to assist this species

Information sources

IBRA Bioregion IBRA Subregion Known or predicted Geographic restrictions region
New England TablelandsNortheast Forest Lands Known None
New England TablelandsStanthorpe Plateau Known None
New England TablelandsWalcha Plateau Known None
New England TablelandsWongwibinda Plateau Known None
NSW North CoastBarrington Known None
NSW North CoastCataract Known None
NSW North CoastChaelundi Known None
NSW North CoastCoffs Coast and Escarpment Known None
NSW North CoastComboyne Plateau Known None
NSW North CoastDalmorton Known None
NSW North CoastKaruah Manning Known None
NSW North CoastMacleay Hastings Known None
NSW North CoastMummel Escarpment Known None
NSW North CoastRocky River Gorge Known None
NSW North CoastUpper Hunter Known None
NSW North CoastUpper Manning Known None
NSW North CoastWashpool Known None
Other StateJervis Bay Territory Predicted None
Other StateQLD Known None
South East CornerBateman Known None
South East CornerEast Gippsland Lowlands Predicted None
South East CornerSouth East Coastal Ranges Known None
South Eastern HighlandsKybeyan-Gourock Known None
South Eastern QueenslandClarence Lowlands Known None
South Eastern QueenslandClarence Sandstones Known None
South Eastern QueenslandScenic Rim Known None
South Eastern QueenslandWoodenbong Known None
Sydney BasinEttrema Predicted None
Sydney BasinIllawarra Known None
Sydney BasinJervis Known None
Sydney BasinMoss Vale Predicted None
Sydney BasinPittwater Known None
Sydney BasinSydney Cataract Known None
Sydney BasinWyong Known None
Sydney BasinYengo Known None